Jeff Speck is a city planner and urban designer who, through writing, lectures, and built work, advocates internationally for more walkable cities. As Director of Design at the National Endowment for the Arts, he oversaw the Mayors' Institute on City Design and created the Governors' Institute on Community Design. Prior to joining the endowment, Speck spent ten years as Director of Town Planning at DPZ and Co., the principal firm behind the New Urbanism movement. He is author of Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Timeand the co-author of Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream as well as The Smart Growth Manual.
Suburban Nation was called "the bible of urbanists,” by the Wall Street Journal.” The Christian Science Monitor called Walkable City "timely and important, a delightful, insightful, irreverent work,” and "required reading.” Jeff Speck's TED talks and other videos have been viewed more than three million times. With Walkable City Rules, he can be expected to cement his role as the most listened-to city planner in America.
This global consciousness inspires space travellers who then provide emotional and spiritual observations. Their views from outer space awaken them to a grand realization that all who share our planet make up a single community. They think this viewpoint will help unite the nations of the world in order to build a peaceful future for the present generation and the ones that follow.
Many poets, philosophers, and writers have criticized the artificial borders that separate people preoccupied with the notion of nationhood. Despite the visions and hopes of astronauts, poets, writers, and visionaries, the reality is that nations are continuously at war with one another, and poverty and hunger prevail in many places throughout the world, including the United States.
So far, no astronaut arriving back on Earth with this new social consciousness has pro- posed to transcend the world's limitations with a world where no national boundaries exist. Each remains loyal to his/her particular nation-state, and doesn’t venture beyond patriotism - "my country, right or wrong" – because doing so may risk their positions.
Most problems we face in the world today are of our own making. We must accept that the future depends upon us. Interventions by mythical or divine characters in white robes descending from the clouds, or by visitors from other worlds, are illusions that cannot solve the problems of our modern world. The future of the world is our responsibility and depends upon decisions we make today. We are our own salvation or damnation. The shape and solutions of the future depend totally on the collective effort of all people working together.
Although many of us feel we can prepare for our future by thinking, acting, and learning using present methods and values, nothing is farther from the truth – especially in today’s rapidly changing world. A newborn child enters a world not of his or her own making. Each succeeding generation inherits the values, accomplishments, hopes, successes, and failings of previous generations. And they inherit the results of the decisions made by those generations.
For the hundreds of thousands of years of human existence when technologies were simple or non-existent, this may have had little impact on human life and the earth that sustains it. Each generation of hunters and gatherers, then plowmen and pioneers, passed on tools to the next generation to help them survive. Change from one generation to the next was slow and hardly noticeable. In those days there was little understanding of science and how things worked, and explanations were not scientific.
This is no longer the case in today’s high-tech world where a change that affects millions may happen in a matter of seconds. A child born today inherits a world vastly different from that of its parent’s generation, let alone that from centuries ago. Previous generations left a legacy of, exploitation, occupation, and irrelevant values that present great challenges, but also opportunities to the people of today.
The application of scientific principles, for better or worse, accounts for every single advance that has improved people’s lives. Important documents and proclamations have been issued granting rights and privileges to members of societies, but at the heart of human progress – or destruction – is the rock-solid foundation of science.
For generations past it was impossible to direct the future much beyond the present moment, and forecasts of the future were based on non- scientific methods. Prophets and sages presented visions of the future based on dreams, hallucinations, religious fervor, divination of animal parts, crystal balls, etc. Some may even have been accurate, but this was more because of luck than because of any direct channel to the supernatural.
This tenth anniversary edition includes a new preface by the authors.
Fresh, local nutrient-dense fruits vegetables are hard to find in winter in cold climates. Growing warm-weather crops like tomatoes, bananas, avocados, and other perennials is nearly impossible using conventional structures. The solution for millions of backyard and small-scale commercial growers is self-heating solar greenhouses.
The Year-round Solar Greenhouse is the one-stop guide to designing and building greenhouses that harness and store energy from the sun to create naturally heated, lush growing environments even in the depths of winter, covering principles of solar greenhouse design and siting, glazing material properties and selection, controlling heat loss, ventilation, and construction methods. Additionally, an in-depth section covers sustainable ways of heating the greenhouse without fossil fuels, including using thermal mass and storing heat underground with a ground to air heat exchanger.
Variations include attached solar greenhouses, earth sheltered greenhouses, plus integrating hydroponics and aquaponics. More than a dozen case studies from across North America provide inspiration and demonstrate specific challenges and solutions for growing year-round in any climate.
Grow your own food, anytime, anywhere using the power of the sun!